Year: 2003 Source: New England Journal of Medicine, v.349, no.4, (July 2003), p.359-356 SIEC No: 20041055

307 nurses employed by hospice programs in Oregon completed a questionnaire. 33% of the respondents reported that in the previous 4 years they had cared for a patient who deliberately hastened death by voluntary refusal of food & fluids. According to nurses, on a scale from 0 (very bad) to 9 (very good), the median score for the quality of deaths was 8. The patients who stopped eating considered their own quality of life very poor, were older than patients who died by physician-assisted suicide, & were less likely to be evaluated by a mental health professional. (24 refs)